Co-founder of ethical.market, Raquel is on a mission to live a more sustainable lifestyle

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Fashion Revolution Special: Q&A with Sustainable Fashion Brand Bojest

For our final guest post in our 'Fashion Revolution Week' special, we asked our conscientious seller Bojest to tell us more about their sustainable business. Explaining why they have worked so hard to ensure that both their impact on the environment and their care in people ethics are key to their brand. 

Tell us a bit about Bojest

Bojest stands for easy on the planet & easy to wear eclectic wardrobe staples. Behind Bojest is emerging British designer Tamsin Allsebrook, with a focus on creating a versatile fashion brand. This 'British Made' brand has a strong identity and ethical & sustainable vision, aiming its ever evolving relaxed playful range at women who are unafraid to break the rules of fashion in a very laid back yet deliberate kind of way. This current collection of bold oversized prints that are inspired by nature and urban life are made from 100% organic cotton and are perfect for the #slowfashion and seasonless wardrobe. 

What is Organic Cotton?

Organic cotton is made from non-genetically modified plants and is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment. In the growing process of the cotton, agricultural chemicals such as fertilisers and pesticides are NOT used. Instead organic production systems replenish and maintain soil fertility, biodiversity of seeds and wildlife and importantly the livelihood's of farmers are protected.

GOTS certified Organic Cotton means that not only does the agricultural process of the cotton adhere to the strict criteria above but also that the biodegradability meets strict toxicity rules and in addition the water used in the process of the production of the cotton is treated before it is let out into the environment, therefore protecting the environment, ecosystems and communities. GOTS certification also ensures not only the environmental and social responsible production at the growing stage but all stages of post production including transportation and the weaving. 

Why choose Organic Cotton?

The Bojest ethos is about minimising the negative effect we have on the planet and each other. Climate change is the most urgent and dangerous threat we face, and I believe that it is something for which are all responsible and can all do something about. Quite clearly organic cotton production is unable to solve all of the environmental, ethical & social issues, but does play an important part in reducing the burden our planet and communities bear. With the utmost urgency we need to live, consume and run businesses that protect our planet and ourselves.

Injustice is the reason for much of the suffering in the world and the damage to our planet. I knew when I set up Bojest I didn't want a business that ignored, participated or contributed to these injustices. I think once you're eyes have been opened to the dangerous impact fashion has on the environment and the terrible social inequality, particularly the people that bear the heaviest burden of the clothes we wear, you can not ignore it. Based on that alone, organic cotton is a no-brainer business & consumer choice.

Further benefits for the consumer is organic cotton feels better against the skin and if you wear it in the summer you will certainly feel cooler as it's naturally breathable. it's just as suitable for colder days too. It lasts longer, feels amazingly soft and drapes better. While more research needs to be done to understand how wearing toxic fabrics can affect your health, I firmly believe that if the pesticides, chemicals and practices used in non-organic cotton production are causing climate change and ill-health of those involved in its growing and manufacturing then how can it not affect the consumer/wearer in a direct way too. Therefore when we wear them, we can't be doing too much good to our bodies. Organic cotton is the safest & healthiest for all of us and our planet. The pay-back is tremendous! 


How did you look into sourcing?

Being small does have its limitations but it can make you more creative and so you tend to think outside the box and become quite adapt at navigating a way around obstacles. Not all suppliers will work with small and independent designers, but there's definitely a fast growing trend by big suppliers to work with fledging businesses, as your business grows, so does theirs! And thankfully there are a number of online resources that have databases if you are looking for specific products, companies based in specific countries to suppliers or brands that meet specific ethical criteria and/or certification. 'Ethical Fashion Forum' is a great example of this.

Why is all this important to your brand?

It's so important! Not only because I personally want to do what I can (no matter how small), to address the injustices in the world. And of course consumers not only have a right to know but are more curious than ever about where, who & how products are made. But getting straight to the point, organic cotton puts people and the planet first and that ethos should be important to every brand.

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To learn more about Bojest or to view their Spring/Summer collection click here

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Ethical Living is your destination for ethical fashion, sustainable living and top tips for an ethical home. With interviews and guest blog posts, it's the perfect addition to your coffee break! Ethical Living is brought to you by ethical.market

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